Democratic Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes was appointed the next majority leader of the state Assembly, Speaker Carl Heastie on Monday announced.

She is the first woman to hold the post.

Peoples-Stokes, a Buffalo lawmaker, replaces Democrat Joe Morelle of the Rochester area who was elected to the House of Representatives in November.

“Serving alongside Crystal Peoples-Stokes, I have had the opportunity to see firsthand how hard she works for the people of Buffalo and for families across our state,” Heastie said. “Crystal is a trusted colleague who I have known for many years, and her experience and dedication to improving the lives of all New Yorkers is why I know she will make an ideal partner in leading the Assembly Majority. Crystal is widely respected by her colleagues and I am proud to appoint her as the next Majority Leader of the People’s House.”

The job of majority leader, which involves managing the day-to-day operations and floor debates of the Assembly when lawmakers are in session, has traditionally gone to an upstate or western New York lawmaker to provide regional balance.

“I am proud and honored that Speaker Heastie has asked me to serve as majority leader for the New York State Assembly,” she said.

“Throughout my career I have fought so that everyone – regardless of zip code, school district, race or background – has access to the tools and opportunities they need to succeed. I look forward to using my new role as majority leader to continue fighting for New York’s families.”